Nether­lands ea­ger to en­ter In­dian de­fence mar­ket

The Dutch Prime Min­is­ter’s visit to In­dia will go a long way in cre­at­ing aware­ness about the In­dian de­fence mar­ket and avail­able op­por­tu­ni­ties for the Dutch de­fence in­dus­tries

SP's MAI - - MILITARY REPORT - [ By Ranjeet Ku­mar ]

Though the Nether­lands de­fence in­dus­try has a ro­bust tech­nol­ogy base, their pen­e­tra­tion in the In­dian de­fence mar­ket is not very sig­nif­i­cant and hence rel­a­tively new to In­dia. The visit of the Prime Min­is­ter Mark Rutte to In­dia, from June 4 to 5, pro­vided an op­por­tu­nity to in­tro­duce the Nether­lands de­fence in­dus­try to In­dia.

Dur­ing the bi­lat­eral talks with the Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi, Mark Rutte com­mit­ted his sup­port to in­volve his coun­try’s de­fence in­dus­try in In­dia un­der the ‘Make in In­dia’ pro­gramme. As a first step, an agree­ment on man­u­fac­tur­ing of dredgers in In­dia’s Cochin Ship­yard was signed which will help in de­vel­op­ing In­dian ship­yards, both civil­ian and de­fence. The Dutch Prime Min­is­ter’s visit to In­dia will go a long way in cre­at­ing aware­ness about the In­dian de­fence mar­ket and avail­able op­por­tu­ni­ties for the Dutch de­fence in­dus­tries. The In­dian de­fence mar­ket is likely to be around $250 bil­lion dur­ing the next 10 years, as stated by the In­dian De­fence Min­is­ter Manohar Par­rikar a few days ago.

There are a few sec­tors in which the Nether­lands de­fence in­dus­try has left its im­print on In­dia. For ex­am­ple, the Thales Nether­lands has made a huge mark in In­dian mar­ket with its radar tech­nolo­gies. The In­dian armed forces have also or­dered hy­draulics and com­mu­ni­ca­tion sys­tem from the coun­try.

The Nether­lands naval mar­itime in­dus­try is con­sid­ered very ad­vanced, which has a very large share in sup­plies to the NATO forces, but with dwin­dling de­fence bud­gets of the NATO part­ners, the Dutch are look­ing for new mar­kets. The Dutch hope to see ar­eas of col­lab­o­ra­tion widen and strengthen in the com­ing years in In­dia in de­fence and mar­itime se­cu­rity.

The bi­lat­eral en­gage­ment in the de­fence sec­tor will pave the way for wider co­op­er­a­tion in se­cu­rity is­sues. For ex­am­ple, when Rutte de­clared his sup­port for per­ma­nent mem­ber­ship of the UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil (UNSC) for In­dia, Prime Min­is­ter Modi also com­mit­ted In­dia’s sup­port for Dutch can­di­da­ture for non-per­ma­nent mem­ber of the UNSC dur­ing 2017-18. The Dutch also com­mit­ted to sup­port In­dian claim for non-per­ma­nent mem­ber in the UNSC dur­ing 2021-22.

Hence, it was nat­u­ral for the two Prime Min­is­ters to state in the joint com­mu­nique is­sued af­ter the talks, “Recog­nis­ing the in­creas­ingly glob­alised na­ture of threats and chal­lenges and the shared stakes in each other’s se­cu­rity, the Prime Min­is­ters agreed to ex­pand se­cu­rity and de­fence co­op­er­a­tion be­tween In­dia and the Nether­lands.” Both the Prime Min­is­ters wel­comed the pos­si­bil­ity of Dutch par­tic­i­pa­tion in In­dia’s ‘Make in In­dia’ ini­tia­tive in the de­fence sec­tor. Nether­lands and In­dia al­ready have deep co­op­er­a­tion in the eco­nomic field. The Dutch are the fifth largest source of in­vest­ment in In­dia and sim­i­lar is the case for In­dian in­vestors in the Nether­lands, who are also the fifth largest in­vest­ment source.

Both sides also de­cided to set up a joint work­ing group on counter-ter­ror­ism, for which the first meet­ing has been fixed on June 19. Naren­dra Modi rightly said to Rutte, “Your visit has set the stage to take our ties to the next level and re­alise the full po­ten­tial of our re­la­tion­ship.” Rutte re­sponded, “Right now our trade is at six bil­lion Eu­ros and over 200 Dutch com­pa­nies are al­ready work­ing in In­dia, but we are look­ing at pos­si­bil­i­ties in other ar­eas.”

Af­ter the meet­ing Modi and Rutte talked about the bi­lat­eral se­cu­rity co­op­er­a­tion, “We have the ex­pe­ri­ence in fight­ing the Is­lamic State in Iraq. In­dia has ex­pe­ri­ence in fight­ing ter­ror­ism as well. We will ex­change in­for­ma­tion on how to deal with terror and share our ex­pe­ri­ences.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.